A Picasso-esque scene unfolded in Maxwelton on Independence Day, just like it has for decades.
Yoda, adorned in various red, white and blue decorations, went fishing off the top of a truck next to Spider-Man. Sasquatch was carted down Maxwelton Road to Dave Mackie Park in a Radio Flyer. Other groups touted their causes, such as the nonprofit thespians at Whidbey Children’s Theater, Boy Scouts and election candidates.
Let it be known that election season officially begins with the self promotion at the Maxwelton Club’s Independence Day Parade. In addition to the general political rousing of Republicans of Island County, Democratic Commissioner Helen Price Johnson walked the road waving to constituents. Betty Bond, who will run in the only primary on South Whidbey for a school board seat, rode in a car tossing taffy to parents and toddlers, many of whom she may represent.
Continuing the seeming absurdity of the parade, the “Pirates of Lagoon Point,” trotted down the street. Instead of pillaging like the tiny terrors usually do, they threw out candy by the handful until they reached the ballfield.
“We come and pillage once a year,” said the pirate parent escorting kids Ana Olsen, Aaron Olsen and Drew Stuart. “This is our way of making amends.”
The swarm of people walking from French Road down to the parade drew a few entrepreneurs to the roadside. Ana Rose Geise, 6, Abby Kvart, 7, and Emma Kvart, 5, offered iced lemonade and cookies to wary walkers that quickly sold out in the 70-degree noon sun.
Grand marshals of the parade were Terry and Merrillyn Stone who cruised in the back of a bright red Chevrolet Bel Air.
Another staple in the parade was the Little Brown Church’s float, an A-frame towed by a tractor. This year, Cannon Bing of Clinton rode with Alicia and Allie Hill of Issaquah. Waving to the throng of onlookers proved more uncomfortable than the youngsters expected.
“It was fun but also nerve wracking,” said Alicia Hill, 9. “It was a lot of people.”
If anything, the Maxwelton parade was a classic South Whidbey community event combining American patriotism with the individuality that defines the South End. Where else could someone watch a parade that featured the red, white and blue of Old Glory combined with peace walkers, kids unicycling and dogs being pushed in strollers?